June 24, 2011
Contact: Gayle Lynn Falkenthal, APR
(619) 997-2495 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Sherry Yarbrough named YWCA TWIN Award Recipient for 2011
Yarbrough recognized for dedication to career education, support for women in construction
(Poway, CA) - Sherry Yarbrough, Executive Director of the Associated Builders and Contractors Apprenticeship Training Trust, was selected as a recipient of the prestigious YWCA Tribute to Women & Industry (TWIN) Award. The TWIN Award recognizes successful women executives throughout the United States for their outstanding achievements and positive contributions to their organizations. Recipients were honored at the 32nd Annual TWIN Awards luncheon held on June 21.
Yarbrough has devoted her professional life as an educator to providing individuals the opportunity to better their lives. Yarbrough administers and oversees an award-winning, nationally recognized, accredited training program for merit-shop state and federally registered apprentices. The program offers a three-four year training program in five different construction crafts including electrical, plumbing, pipefitting, sheet metal/HVAC and electronic systems technician.
In June 2011, the most recent class of 80 graduates received their state, federal and ABC journeyman certificates after completing a rigorous four-year program. Since the San Diego Apprenticeship Training Trust program began in 1989, over 2,000 graduates have launched rewarding careers. San Diego County’s construction industry has benefited from hiring local, well-trained, highly skilled professionals.
Construction remains one of the last few overwhelmingly male-dominated career fields. According to the U.S. Census Bureau and the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC), construction related jobs account for approximately 66% of all jobs in the United States. The workforce is comprised of 90.4% men and 9.6% women (2006). However, women-owned firms are slowly on the rise.
Yarbrough has been a dedicated contributor during her 30 years of leadership as an active member of NAWIC. She is a devoted member of the NAWIC Mentoring Committee which sponsors MAGIC Camp (Mentoring a Girl in Construction) – a summer week-long hands-on camp during which high school girls have the opportunity to explore the different construction trades and learn from women in the construction industry.
Yarbrough has worked hard over the past decade to expand apprenticeship opportunities through outreach and school-to-career activities. Yarbrough and her staff work closely with community college districts, high school districts, Job Corps, Youthbuild and Regional Occupational Programs to educate teachers, guidance counselors, parents and students about the importance of the construction industry, and about the many rewarding opportunities for skilled workers within it.
Yarbrough is a founding Board Member of the North County Trade Tech Charter High School. This partnership between ABC San Diego and “Trade Tech” as it is known has provided an alternative educational path for many at-risk youth. The school was born from a hands-on, project based learning program through New Haven Youth & Family Services, a Vista-based social services agency that provides live-in facilities for at-risk adolescent boys. The school began in 2008 with 40 freshmen and has added one grade level each year. In the 2011-12 school year it will serve 160 to 180 students and graduate its first senior class.
Trade Tech’s curriculum is similar to what an entry level apprentice would receive. Trade Tech students that test out at mastery level will enjoy an accelerated apprenticeship program with ABC San Diego due to their curriculum, on-the-job training and service learning hours. The Partnership between ABC San Diego and Trade Tech won a national award from the Construction Users Roundtable (CURT) for “Innovation in Education and Workforce Development.”
Yarbrough is a Certified Master Trainer by the National Center for Construction & Research. Among the recognition Yarbrough has received within the construction industry, she received a Special Achievement Award from the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Apprenticeship & Training; was named Outstanding Individual Contributing to Apprenticeship and the Outstanding North Carolina Apprenticeship Program by the North Carolina Department of Labor, Division of Apprenticeship. She also received a Champion of the Merit Shop Award from the Coalition for Fair Employment in Construction.
About ABC San Diego
Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) is a national trade association representing 22,000 members from more than 19,000 construction and industry-related firms. Founded on the merit shop philosophy, ABC and its 70 chapters help members develop people, win work and deliver that work safely, ethically and profitably for the betterment of the communities in which they work. The San Diego Chapter of ABC represents construction and construction-related firms throughout San Diego County. To find out more about ABCSD, visit www.abcsd.org.